4th Feb 1915 · 27th Mar 1915 Podcast Storyline

Tyneside Women at Work

128 min Play story

Working-class Edie finds a new world open to her as women enter the workforce

  1. 4th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. More family ties

      The Marshalls, who have a crying baby of their own, hear about Kitty's arrival from Phyllis

    2. Changes at the arms factory

      Geoffrey overrides Alan's misgivings and orders him to find women to pack shells in the new, separate sheds

  2. 5th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. Young mothers compare notes

      It becomes clear how little the two women have in common - besides Folkestone landmarks

    2. Cressida sounds out a friend

      Maud persuades Cressida to fund her pilot scheme to get women cleaning the streets - giving her 'a purpose'

  3. 9th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. An encounter on the stairs

      Widowed Davy is looking for a babysitter - but women like Edie are starting to go out to work rather than staying in the home

  4. 12th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 3

    1. An outing with the baby

      Phyllis has old fashioned views on child rearing - while the tea room waitresses see new possibilities in work

    2. Peter makes his feelings felt

      The women plan to stay and discuss women working, but Peter demands to be fed

    3. Mr Hims at bay

      Mr Hims is caught between the feisty Cressida and Maud and his rebellious waitresses, discussing cleaning jobs for women

  5. 13th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. Political stirrings

      A week of work is giving Edie an awareness of unfairness and a wish to improve herself - joining the library, for instance

  6. 16th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 5

    1. Business over breakfast

      Geoffrey is concerned about life at the factory - especially now the women are there - while Cressida soldiers ahead with her own plans

    2. Cressida must step up

      Cressida's personal time is less valuable to the committee than Collingwood, which could be a hospital or training centre

    3. A nursery tea party

      After the tea party, something more serious is planned

    4. A dressing-up session

      Cressida subtly tries to improve Kitty's grammar and manners, while Kitty shows interest in modern household practices

    5. The day comes full circle

      A weary Geoffrey is in no mood to listen to Cressida's enthusiasms for committee work and christenings

  7. 19th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. The life of a newspaper reporter

      Reporter Luke would like to try his hand at analysis and exposes but is stuck writing about labour relations and county court cases

      Characters

    2. Luke and the female cleaners

      Interviewing Esther, Luke finds himself telling her about himself - the polio that kept him out of the war, his father

  8. 20th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 8

    1. A fight at the factory

      A co-worker tells Edie her brother is in a fight

    2. A spanner in the works

      Johnnie's ineptitude, and his attitude, inflame his fellow workers

    3. Johnnie talks revolution

      Johnnie and Edie begin to flirt amid a discussion of voting rights

    4. A joke on Johnnie

      Johnnie changes into shorts for the football match, unaware the men play in their work clothes

    5. To the football match

      The over-protective Fraser warns his sister against getting too friendly with Davy

    6. Touchline commentary

      There is an undercurrent of threat in the suggestion that the healthy-looking football players should be in the army

    7. A bit of a fracas

      Kenny offers to see both of Edie's brothers safely home from the scuffle

    8. Johnnie and the girls

      Martha leaves Edie with Johnnie, not wanting to play gooseberry

  9. 23rd February 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. An angry exchange

      Johnnie virtually admits trying to bring down the system, and suggests women should work on the shop floor

    2. A modest proposal

      The day has cast Alan into a black mood

  10. 25th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. Kitty at the factory

      Johnnie shows Kitty off to Fraser and the men as if to prove he has friends - indeed, relatives - from the working class

    2. An awkward meeting

      Johnnie's attempts to engineer a friendship between the women is a disaster

  11. 26th February 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. After the meeting

      Fraser believes all men are monsters: Edie wants a better future for herself

  12. 2nd March 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. Cressida's cleverness

      Cressida tells Geoffrey she has offered the stable block as a military hospital: when he objects she suggests a nurse's training camp instead

  13. 3rd March 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. Discussing Johnnie

      Fraser is wary of Johnnie's intentions towards Edie even though he likes the man

    2. Johnnie's new bike

      Johnnie invites Edie - who wants something more than 'normal' - to a concert, and carries her off on his handlebars

  14. 6th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 3

    1. Life as a scavenger

      Mary joins Esther and the female 'scavengers' in street cleaning. The two young women compare notes on their family lives; Hannah has recovered

      Characters

    2. Lifting bins at dawn

      We learn Esther is walking out with Luke, but when she sees her father in Tynemouth, it looks like his deception is tightening to entrap him

    3. Mother and daughter confidences

      Talk of trust and of men who hurt women sits oddly with what we - but not the women - know about Robert

  15. 9th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. A picnic

      Cressida bets an industrialist that women will be doing men's work by the war's end

  16. 13th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 3

    1. An awkward transaction

      A prostitute divines that Davy is a virgin - and the Ballarat is raided by police

    2. Down at the police station

      Davy is not only locked up but realises the prostitute he was with is a man

    3. Surprise after surprise

      Male prostitute Paul/Pauline has realised that Davy is actually a woman - a widow called Marion, she explains

  17. 18th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 4

    1. Davy's secret revealed

      Davy is taunted and then assaulted and revealed to be a woman

    2. Alan surprises Geoffrey

      Learning that Marion, posing as Davy, has worked as well as a man, Geoffrey keeps her on, but on a woman's half wage

    3. "Davy" explains

      Fraser tries to pretend he always knew 'summat was up' while Davy/Marion resents doing the same job for a woman's half wage

    4. Alan lays down the law

      Alan tells Johnnie to stop using the workplace to battle against Geoffrey, or he will be fired

  18. 20th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 2

    1. Marion's new situation

      The working men and women accept Marion easily, but there is tension between Kenny and Edie over Johnnie

    2. A bite of cherry tart

      Johnnie's bid to get Edie alone is thwarted: a ship has run aground and the beach is full of people collecting oranges

  19. 25th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 6

    1. Marion and her children

      Telling a story of a rent collector, Marion hears a knocking at the door

      Characters

    2. Edie is concerned

      Marion's childminder has gone to work, so she has been forced to stay at home.

    3. Major changes for the Chadwicks

      Edie tells Marion she has slept with Johnnie. Fraser arrives and tries to force himself on Marion before Edie knocks him unconscious

    4. A prosaic development

      Marion, posing as Davy's sister, invites Luke in

    5. Getting rid of Fraser

      Marion convinces Luke to get the dazed Fraser out of her lodgings, and says she will tell her 'brother' Davy about the rent owing

    6. Edie in hiding

      Edie can't face living at home any more and things are difficult for Marion too, but Marion has an idea...

  20. 26th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. Isabel flies back to Collingwood

      Isabel is incensed at being called back, though Cressida is still furious with her mother. They discuss whether Adeline can be trusted with Peter

  21. 27th March 1915

    Scene 1 of 1

    1. An unexpected meeting

      The women all running away, share confidences - Kitty about Peter's parentage, Edie about conning Johnnie, Marion about cross-dressing

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